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AFRIK-IT  October 1998

AFRIK-IT October 1998

Subject:

Net and Elections - Online Public Service Model Emerges

From:

Steven Clift <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

[log in to unmask]

Date:

Tue, 20 Oct 1998 17:20:00 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

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text/plain (100 lines)

Internet and Elections - Online Public Service Model

A new model for promoting public interest use of the Internet is
emerging with the Web White & Blue initiative in the United States.
This message to leading global Internet policy/community networking
e-mail lists is a brief introduction to that effort and ends with
notes about upcoming conferences and opportunities to meet in person.

Web White & Blue, sponsored by the Markle Foundation and Harvard's
Shorenstein Center, is promoting easy access to 1998 election
information available from over 40 non-profit, government, and
commercial web sites.  Over 1000 web sites, from the largest online
portals and media sites to non-profit and government sites, are
participating by placing the WWB icon on their site.  The scale of
this public service campaign makes it the largest online effort to
promote political participation to date.  The effort took a number of
lessons from the blue ribbon for free speech initiative with the use
of an icon for awareness.

      Visit Web White & Blue at:  http://www.webwhiteblue.org

The About <http://www.webwhiteblue.org/about.html> section contains
details on the project.  For extensive details visit the Press
Information page and download the press kit in PDF.  To receive
official updates from WWB, please subscribe to our announcement list
on the web site.

WWB may be an exciting model for adaptation and use in your own
country with efforts to promote the use of the Internet and
citizen participation.  The model may also be useful for future
global Internet-wide efforts and special events.  What public goals
(often of a non-technical nature) do we want the Internet to help us
reach that cannot be achieved without broadly conceived cooperative
efforts?  Developing online partnerships that involve the private
sector, non-profits/voluntary organizations, governments and
individuals will be required to meet public goals.  Through practice
and various initiatives we will learn through trial and error how
evolve the Internet in ways that fundamentally contribute to public
goals in a world that is increasingly competitive because of
technology.


An opportunity to meet ...

As an aside, I'd like to mention that I plan to participate in the
Internet and Politics conference <http://www.dipoli.hut.fi/pi99/> in
Helsinki, Finland on January 6-9, 1999.  (FYI - I should also be at
the Politics Online conference in Washington DC on Dec. 7
<http://www.gspm.org/politicsonline/>.)

After the Finland conference I am considering a side trip to Estonia
and a stop in Stockholm the next week.  My open rail travel week of
January 18 - 24 may be an opportunity for meetings in a number of
cities including Oslo, Copenhagen, Cologne/Bonn, Brussels or Paris
before an extended visit in London.  I have given around 50
"Democracies Online" public presentations in 14 countries within the
last three years.

I am preparing a new presentation on Web White & Blue and online
public service campaigns.  For those familiar with my past trips, this
visit is more about small group meetings than public presentations,
but depending upon my schedule we can discuss possibilities if you are
interested.

Looking down the road, I hope to be in the Asia-Pacific region for a
few weeks in the second or third quarter of 1999.  Depending upon the
types of projects I am involved with (some big ideas are developing),
I hope to visit a number of other places to complement and the
strengthen our virtual networks of interest.

If you'd like to connect at the conference in Helsinki, meet
during my January trip or plot future possibilities, drop me a note at
<[log in to unmask]> or call me at +1.612.822.8667.

To get better connected to those interested in the use of the
Internet in democracy, join the Democracies Online Newswire that I run
on a voluntary basis. Send a message to: [log in to unmask]  In the
message body, write: subscribe do-wire Your Name (Place)  For more
details and access to past messages see: http://www.e-democracy.org/do


Your comments, ideas, and questions are appreciated.

Sincerely,

Steven Clift, http://www.publicus.net <- Background, Articles
Web White & Blue Project Coordinator, http://www.webwhiteblue.org
Consultant to the International Advisory Group for the Markle
Foundation's E-Mail for All/WWB efforts.
 -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -
   Steven Clift - E: [log in to unmask] - ICQ: 13789183
   3454 Fremont Ave S, Mpls, MN 55408 T:+1.612.822.8667

 Web White & Blue, Project Coordinator    -    Consulting
 http://www.webwhiteblue.org  -   http://www.publicus.net

 Join Democracies Online Newswire To: [log in to unmask]
 "Best of" E-mail-list ->   Body: sub do-wire Your Name
 -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -   -

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